The mummification of ARS: Young entrepreneur turns her love for arts and crafts into a profitable business

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Giani Bright (11) wears her 2016 homecoming mum made by Jurnee Jackson (11).

Giani Bright (11) wears her 2016 homecoming mum made by Jurnee Jackson (11).

 

“I think what makes a good mum… is a lot of sparkle,” Jurnee Jackson (11) said. Since seeing the tradition of mums as a child at homecoming football games, Jackson has had her mind set on following the high school custom of wearing a spirited and detailed flower pin the day of homecoming sports events.

 

At most Texas high schools, male students families construct a mum for the girl their son is asking to the homecoming dance, and although this practice doesn’t exactly work at ARS, many high schoolers make their own mums, or get someone else to make it for them, at a modest fee.

 

“Seeing all the upperclassmen make them, I was like ‘Oh my gosh that looks really cool, I bet I can do it better then them, and better than people they pay $50 for,’” Jackson said.

 

Since making her own mum freshman year, Jackson has created a small client base of peers that has expanded every year, willing to pay her for her mum making skills. Last year she started out making three students mum and this year she has increased to seven. Jackson tries to match each mum to the personality of whoever she is making it for and give it character, as well as taking into account special decoration requests.

 

“If I put all my hard work and effort into them (mums) then people will be like ‘Oh my gosh, Jurnee is the person to go to if I want this or if need this. I’m trying to build a customer base.” Jackson said

 

After seeing Jackson’s own mum in freshman year, junior Giani Bright has been a returning to Jackson for the past two years for her mums. “I could never do it as good as she could, so sophomore year I was like, ‘Hey Jurnee, I’ll pay you $20 to make my mum,’ Bright said, “Art is her thing, so she did really good on it (mum).”

 

Jackson keeps track of special instructions for each order, and updates customers on their mums status through Snapchat. Every mum takes Jackson about an hour to make, and based on the demand from this year, next year she is planning on taking orders as early as six weeks before homecoming in order to get all the requests done on time.

 

“It’s always nice to see other peoples mums, and see their take on it, I feel like it’s really personal to you. Getting one for every year is just to see the progress and how you’ve kinda changed in this one piece throughout the four years of high school,” Bright said.

 

Going along with Texas tradition, the bigger the better applies to mums, and Jackson tends to save her best mum design for her own mum. This year she will be making her mum in all white for an angel theme.